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It is officially SUMMER VACATION!! My kids have finished school and the lazy days of summer are here. I love having my kids home for summer. We live in Texas, which means our summer days are stifling HOT. So, we spend a lot of time at the pool.
The pool at our house is still in need of a lot of work so we joined a local neighborhood pool for the summer. We plan on going regularly. When we lived in the Dallas area we went to our HOA pool often and we perfected our pool bag. So, today I am going to share our favorite pool bag Must-Haves in 6 steps.
First off you must find the perfect pool bag. This is the bag that will get daily use all summer so it has to be perfect! It needs to be large enough to carry towels, sunscreen, pool toys, snacks, drink and possibly a small cooler. Here are few amazing ones you might want to try. The second bag is a special find, since it includes and awesome ice chest at the bottom! Double success!
Next, you need to fill your pool bag with some amazing beach towels. Our family personally loves fluffy cotton towels but my cousin who lives in Hawaii (I know don’t hate her) loves light weight Turkish towels. She swears that they dry fast and I am going to claim her as an expert because she hits the beach more than most people I know. So, this summer we will be trying out both. Maybe I will do a blog post comparison. Here are a few different beach towels to consider. I’m still including both fluffy and Turkish until I make an educated decision for myself.
This might be the number one item in your pool bag. The one item you can not go without at the pool! I am serious about our sunscreen and the kinds we use. I personally only use mineral sunscreen with zinc oxide and titanium dioxide on my family. My friends often make fun of me, and give me a hard time but I have done my “crazy” research and I feel strongly about what I put on their skin. If my kids get other sunscreen put on them I don’t freak out but we really prefer mineral over others. Here are some of my favorites that we have used over the years. Some are pricey, some are not. My personal favorite is Coola mineral but it’s not always readily available.
Also included in sun protection is hats. My friends will tell you I love hats. I wear them often, maybe too often. It’s no surprise that I love hats that protect us from the sun. I bought my first floppy sun hat in Mexico in 2009 and it’s still my favorite hat to this day. However, I still add new hats every year and also purchase one for my kids to wear at the pool or while just playing outside.
My kids love their swim toys. Honestly, it’s what keeps them in the water all afternoon. We started collecting our pool toys 6 years ago so you can imagine the stash we have in our pool bag. I personally don’t allow water spraying toys at the pool only because I don’t trust my kids aim enough. Ha! They will seriously hit the only grandmother who is reading her book far away from the pool. So we took those out of the bag early on.
Snacks and Hydration
If your goal in summer is to have a great day at the pool regularly you MUST pack good snacks and water. My kids seriously jump in the pool once and think that warrants a snack. Since this isn’t my first rodeo I am prepared when we head to the pool. In my past experience I have found taking an insulated cup for each person is a must. I also take bags of dry snacks and pack fruit, veggies, deli meat, dips or hard boiled eggs or anything cold in our favorite rubbermaid lunch containers that have an icepack that connects. Usually I put cold items in the kids old lunch boxes but sometimes I do pack a separate soft ice chest.
That’s our pool bag “must have’s”. The key to keeping a successful pool bag is to make sure to empty it and restock it after every use. The minute we return home from the pool we remove the food and bottles, take out any trash and wet towels, then go ahead and put clean towels in the bag and hang it by the back door. It’s ready for the next day.
I want to know what your pool survival tips are. Mine obvious have changed a lot as my kids have gotten older. We also can stay a lot longer at the pool than we could 5 years ago. Every year is a new learning experience for us. Some days I master it and think “This mom thing is easy!” while other days it’s a disaster and I think “I’m never returning to the pool!”.